The Beyond the Story Podcast recently featured Scott Simons, the Chief Operating Officer of CMAS Valley Dealership, who shared his insights on how to create a company culture in the auto industry. Simons has over 20 years of experience in the auto industry, and his dealership has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Maine for several years. In this episode, he shared his strategies and tactics for building a strong company culture that fosters employee engagement and customer satisfaction.
Simons started by explaining that company culture is not something that can be created overnight. It requires a long-term commitment from the leadership team and the entire organization. He emphasized that the key to building a great company culture is to focus on the people. He said that when employees feel valued and supported, they are more likely to be engaged and motivated, which leads to better customer service and business results.
Simons shared several practical tips for creating a company culture in the auto industry. Here are some of the highlights:
Hire for cultural fit: Simons believes that it's important to hire people who share the company's values and vision. He said that while technical skills are important, they can be taught, but attitude and work ethic are more difficult to change. By hiring people who align with the company culture, he ensures that everyone is working towards the same goal.
Invest in employee training and development: Simons emphasized the importance of providing ongoing training and development opportunities to employees. He said that when employees feel that they are growing and learning, they are more likely to be engaged and committed to their work. He also believes that investing in employee development is a way to show that the company cares about its employees' futures.
Communicate regularly and transparently: Simons believes that open communication is essential for building a strong company culture. He said that leaders should communicate with employees regularly and be transparent about the company's goals and challenges. He also encourages employees to provide feedback and suggestions for improvement.
Recognize and reward employees: Simons believes that recognizing and rewarding employees for their hard work is a way to show appreciation and reinforce the company's values. He said that he makes an effort to recognize employees for their contributions, whether it's through public recognition or small gestures like handwritten notes.
Prioritize customer service: Simons emphasized the importance of customer service in the auto industry. He said that when employees focus on providing excellent customer service, it creates a positive culture and leads to repeat business and referrals. He encourages employees to go above and beyond for customers and to make their experience memorable.
Throughout the podcast, Simons emphasized that creating a strong company culture requires a long-term commitment from the leadership team and the entire organization. He said that it's important to be intentional about building a culture that supports employees and prioritizes customer service. Simons also shared that his dealership has a strong focus on community involvement and giving back, which he believes is another way to reinforce the company's values and culture.
In conclusion, Scott Simons provided valuable insights into how to create a company culture in the auto industry. By focusing on the people, investing in employee training and development, communicating regularly and transparently, recognizing and rewarding employees, and prioritizing customer service, Simons has built a dealership that is recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Maine. His strategies and tactics can be applied to any industry, and serve as a reminder that creating a strong company culture is essential for business success.